2010 is the 80th anniversary of the establishment of Citizen Timepiece Co., Ltd. (hereinafter referred to as Citizen), and it is also the 15th year that Citizen has officially launched its solar-powered watch. This year, Citizen not only launched Super Sky Eagle Deluxe Edition, Super Titanium, and Eco-Drive DOME, and other products integrating leading technology and unique design. It also launched a series of innovative measures at the service and marketing level.
For example, Citizen’s single product barcode is the first in the watch industry, which is equivalent to creating an ‘ID’ for each Citizen watch, which truly protects the rights and interests of consumers. In terms of channels, Citizen has increased the expansion of flagship stores.
In addition, Citizen has been committed to the construction of mid-to-high-end brand image. In August 2010, Citizen invited the popular superstar Takeshi Kaneshiro as the spokesperson, and tried to promote the brand image with greater force through its “innovative thinking”.
In order to convey the brand spirit to the public in a more visual way, Citizen has organized a C-thousands list, hoping to inspire the C-spirit of the Creativity, Challenge, and Commonweal by showing the rich life experiences of C-thousands.
In short, in order to get closer to consumers and display the Citizen brand in a more comprehensive manner, this old watch brand that has entered China for more than 50 years is committed to conquering the market with its technology products that combine technology and beauty.
& ldquo; From the advent of the first Eco-Drive watch to the first to develop a radio-controlled watch, Citizen has been adhering to the spirit of & ldquo; never stopping & rdquo; innovation is an inherent gene of Citizen. Challenge, can Citizen lead the development trend of watch technology. & rdquo; The general manager of Citizen (China) Watch Co., Ltd. Ryufu Sugawa told the reporter of ‘New Marketing’.
Market positioning ‘New Marketing’: Citizen recently put forward the concept of a C-class master. This is a very new concept. What is a C-class master? Is this a concept you introduced specifically for the Chinese market?
Sumikawa Ryufu: We want to convey a message through the C celebrity list: Citizen is an innovative brand and has been challenging ourselves. The activities of the C-class masters emphasized the courage to innovate, dare to challenge, and enthusiasm for public welfare, which was in line with the brand spirit of Citizen. The several celebrities selected in the C-class talent list are very good young people in different fields, which reflects the spirit shared by the current generation of white-collar workers. We want to promote such a C-spirit through the C-staff list. This event is tailored for the Chinese market.
新 ‘New Marketing’: Many multinational companies analyze the Chinese market and believe that the Chinese market is too complicated. How does Citizen deal with the complexity of the regional market?
Sumikawa Ryufu: Citizen’s strategy when stratifying in the face of complex markets has commonalities and differences. The common thing is that the image must be unified. We sell more than 300 products, and dealers can choose products based on regional market characteristics. This is very flexible. But the same thing is that no matter where it is, it should reflect the ‘fusion of technology and beauty’ of Citizen and convey the spirit of the brand. Others allow dealers to choose, they know what the needs of the local market are, which can eliminate some regional differences in perception.
‘New Marketing’: What do you think are the preferences of Chinese consumers for watch consumption?
Izumikawa Ryufu: Their preferences are actually to choose watches based on their own preferences, attitudes and aesthetics, so as long as we make watches in line with the spirit of our own transmission, consumers will like them. ‘The fragrance of wine is not afraid of the alleys deep’, but now the fragrance of wine must let everyone know its existence, we must let the consumer groups know so as to resonate with them, and it is a kind of ideological resonance so that we can make it Have a sense of identity with the Citizen brand.
新 ‘New Marketing’: With the changes in the watch market, who are the target consumers of Citizen today?
Sumikawa Ryufu: Social elites and white-collar workers aged 25 to 40.
新 ‘New Marketing’: What are the advantages of Citizen watches that will surely impress these people?
Ningzhuo Chuanfu: Citizen is no longer a mid-range brand, we are positioned as a mid-to-high-end brand. Citizen has entered China for more than half a century, and has a very wide user base and high visibility. For a long time, Citizen has been constantly developing and insisting on innovation. This spirit of challenge and transcendence has kept Citizen in a leading position in the international watch industry.
As a comprehensive manufacturer, the movement used by each Citizen watch is produced by ourselves. At the same time, we can also improve the movement according to the design of the watch, or change the design of the watch according to the movement. From the day of its birth, Citizen’s mission is to provide high-end products and high-level services to all citizens around the world. We must not only do a good job of products, but also provide consumers with high-quality and reliable pre-sale, sale and after-sales service.
Today, the watch is no longer a simple timing tool, but also reflects the personality of the wearer. Adhering to the brand concept of “Persistent Passion, Intellectual Progress”, Citizen Watch hopes to convey a positive attitude towards life to the public and allow the public to fully understand the unique brand charm of Citizen.
Brand Promotion ‘New Marketing’: Although Citizen is positioned at the mid-to-high end, it may still be a mid-end brand in the minds of many consumers. What has Citizen done in improving its brand image?
Sumikawa Ryufu: First, the unified image of the terminal is mainly hardware construction, such as a unified VI system.
Second, we have a set of professional training methods for shopping guides. Citizen shopping guides in any region will use standardized services and sales etiquette in the sales process.
In addition, we also set up a consumer hotline. In the past, consumers did not have local consultation and complaints. After we established the hotline, there were constant calls. We gave timely answers to many confusions and incomprehensions, and this service was run through The whole process of before, during and after sale.
Moreover, we choose Takeshi Kaneshiro as the spokesperson for ‘innovative thinking’ advertising, and strive to make Citizen present a new image. Judging from user word-of-mouth and market feedback, our spokesperson advertisements have been positively recognized by the public, which shows that we chose Mr. Jinchengwu as a brand spokesperson is a very correct choice. As a superstar with international influence, Mr. Takeshi Kaneshiro has a high popularity no matter in Mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan, or Singapore and Malaysia. His mature, wise and strong personal image, he is committed to innovative products. The spirit of the R & D brand is highly consistent.
新 ‘New Marketing’: DOME launched by Citizen sells for 26,600 yuan, and the price is relatively high. Does Citizen want a high-priced strategy to create a high-end brand image?
Sumikawa Ryufu: DOME uses a light kinetic energy radio wave movement, which can receive radio signals from multiple stations (China, Europe, the United States, Japan) and automatically check the time, which is very accurate and convenient. In appearance, the case of this watch is polished by hand, each piece is unique and very precious. This manual sanding process can only be done by three or four people in the world, and the requirements on skills are very high. It may be only a dozen to make 100, because the process is complicated and the cost is high, so the price is high. Through DOME, we want to let consumers know the existence of Citizen’s cutting-edge products, and at the same time, consumers want to understand Citizen’s high-end products, and consumers want to experience Citizen’s leading technology and perfect design.
新 ‘New Marketing’: Technology is easy to be imitated, will this create a certain resistance to the promotion of brand image?
Lian Chuan Longfu: It is not only technology that supports the brand, but also the spirit of the brand, the brand’s ideas, and how to embed its consciousness into the brand. Comparing it from a product perspective, Citizen’s workmanship is different from other brands, so it is necessary to not only use technology to interpret the brand, but also a comprehensive explanation including the meaning of the brand.
Channel layout ‘New Marketing’: Citizen entered the Chinese market relatively early among watch brands. Does your flagship store integrate the original channels or re-select a new flagship store?
Izumikawa Ryufu: It is a re-selection. Citizen entered the Chinese market relatively early, and Citizen, Plum Blossom, Rome and other brands are relatively well-known in the Chinese market. But as Chinese consumers have more and more choices, we need to improve our brand image and brand value as much as possible. While adhering to light energy as the core technology of Citizen, we have expanded our product line and paid more attention to humanity and personality. These need to be supported by strong flagship stores. The original channel layout can no longer meet today’s market needs, so the current flagship store is completely reopened in accordance with Citizen’s strategy in the Chinese market.
新 ‘New Marketing’: What are the main issues you consider when opening a flagship store? Will it be restricted to which cities?
Sumikawa Ryufu: It is mainly to see which regions are suitable for opening flagship stores. Many flagship stores are jointly operated by Citizen and dealers. The dealers understand the local situation. We help them solve their worries. The maintenance of the flagship store is jointly completed by us and the dealers. We will not set the number of cities to drive, nor will we say that we will not drive when we exceed the budget in that year. We must maintain mobility in accordance with market demand.
The purpose of opening a flagship store or a specialty store is nothing more than to provide a comfortable and pleasant shopping environment for local consumers, to allow consumers to directly experience the innovative technology and taste of life brought by Citizen, and to give consumers more choices.
新 ‘New Marketing’: What are your criteria for selecting a dealer?
Izumi Chuanfu: First of all, they must understand the brand idea of Citizen, and at the same time, they must cooperate with the pace of Citizen’s market promotion. If you fail to do both, you cannot become a partner for the time being.
新 ‘New Marketing’: When it comes to fashion, there is a saying that the United States affects Japan, Japan affects South Korea, South Korea affects Taiwan and Hong Kong of China, and finally affects Mainland China. Now that the market is becoming more and more open, what do you think of the development of watches in the Chinese mainland market?
Sumikawa Ryufu: I think the market is now in sync. There is no one who influences others. Chinese young people are very thoughtful and mature.
At present, the unit prices of some of our products in the Chinese market have exceeded the United States and Japan. We have unique products in the Chinese market because the consumer group has accepted our concept and accepted our price point. In fact, many high-end brands are now targeting the Chinese market. With the economic downturn in Europe and the United States, the consumption of high-end products in the Chinese market has not been greatly affected, so everyone has locked up emerging markets in China. We also value the Chinese market.